(Reuters) - GlaxoSmithKline Plc has settled thousands more lawsuits brought by patients alleging its Avandia diabetes drug caused heart attacks, in a move that may defuse potentially massive claims over the medicine.
A company spokeswoman said on Tuesday that consolidated cases which had been due to come to court in Philadelphia this month had been settled. She declined to give further details and said the terms remained confidential.
The first product liability case involving Avandia will now go to court in the United States in October, she added.
The move follows the separate settlement of some 700 cases last month for about $60 million.
Analysts estimate Glaxo had faced a total of 13,000 claims for damages involving Avandia, of which around 5,000 were consolidated in Philadelphia, and there had been fears it could face damages of up to $6 billion.
However, last month's relative modest settlement deal and the latest settlement in Philadelphia suggests the amount paid out by the British-based drugmaker is likely to be a lot lower.
Glaxo are in the high court in the UK later this year defending their antidepressant drug, Seroxat.
The High Court in England made a Group Litigation Order in relation to the Group Action brought by around 500 individuals alleging harm from problems withdrawing from Seroxat.
GlaxoSmithKline's corporate motto is 'committed to improving the quality of human life'
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